As we pursue the sport we love, we often place ourselves in hazardous situations. The Santa Cruz Fly Fishermen Board supports an informative corner to sharpen our be smart and safe behaviors.

Avoid Bug Bites
Submitted by Kirk Mathew

As a group, we are getting to the time of year when we get outdoors more. This reprint from the CDC website gives some guidelines to allow for more casting and less swatting.

Bugs (including mosquitoes, ticks, and some flies) can spread a number of diseases. Many of these diseases cannot be prevented with a vaccine or medicine. You can reduce your risk by taking steps to prevent bug bites.

What type of insect repellent should I use?
For Protection Against Ticks and Mosquitos:

Use a repellent that contains 20% or more DEET for protection that lasts up to several hours. Products containing DEET include Off!, Cutter, Sawyer, and Ultrathon.

For Protection Against Mosquitos Only:
Products with one of the following active ingredients can also help prevent mosquito bites. Higher percentages of active ingredient provide longer protection.
* Picaridin (also known as KBR 3023, Bayrepel, and icaridin. Products containing picaridin include Cutter Advanced, Skin So Soft Bug Guard Plus, and Autan [outside the US])
* Oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE) or PMD (Products containing OLE include Repel and Off! Botanicals)
* IR3535 (Products containing IR3535 include Skin So Soft Bug Guard Plus Expedition and SkinSmart)

Always follow product directions and reapply as directed.
If you are also using sunscreen, apply sunscreen first and insect repellent second.
Follow package directions when applying repellent on children. Avoid applying repellent to their hands, eyes, and mouth.
Consider using permethrin-treated clothing and gear (such as boots, pants, socks, and tents). You can buy pre-treated clothing and gear or treat them yourself.
Treated clothing remains protective after multiple washings. See the product information to find out how long the protection will last.
If treating items yourself, follow the product instructions carefully.
Do not use permethrin directly on skin.

What other steps should I take to prevent bug bites?
Prevent mosquito bites.
Cover exposed skin by wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and hats.
Stay and sleep in screened or air-conditioned rooms.
Use a bed net if the area where you are sleeping is exposed to the outdoors.

Prevent tick bites.
Cover exposed skin by wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and hats.
Tuck in shirts, tuck pants into socks, and wear closed shoes instead of sandals to prevent bites.
Avoid wooded and brushy areas with high grass, brush, and leaves. Walk in the center of hiking trails.

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